A well executed estate plan enables you to manage your assets for tax efficiency and retention of wealth. Plus it gives you the satisfaction of knowing that your financial affairs are in order and organized for your beneficiaries.
Think about everything you own – your home, your possessions, your assets, etc. Your Estate Plan should include the details for what will happen to your estate when you pass on. Wills and trusts allow you to specifically address how you would like your property distributed to your beneficiaries at your death.
Wills and trusts allow you to spell out how you would like your estate handled and your property distributed.
Your will (Last Will and Testament) should lay out how you would like your property and assets distributed upon your death, name an executor of your estate (the person responsible for settling the affairs of your estate) and provide for payment of any costs associated with settling your estate. Without a will, the state will determine the disposition of your assets. It is very important to keep your will updated as different life events occur (marriage, divorce, birth of a child, etc).
A trust differs from a will in that it is an active legal entity. Like a will, a trust lays out how you want your property distributed. A trust also offers the added advantages of property management and probate avoidance. Trusts have Trustees that manage the trust (where a will has an executor). A trustee can either be an individual (such as yourself) or a corporation (such as a bank).
A well executed estate plan allows you to control your assets for tax efficiency and wealth retention and gives you the satisfaction of knowing that your financial affairs are in order for your beneficiaries.
Your Estate Plan should also incorporate these strategic elements:
- Power of Appointment: Power of Appointment gives someone the authority to dispose of certain property under the will.
- Advance Directives: Advance Directives direct your medical and end-of-life care if you become incapacitated.
- Living Will: This document outlines specific instructions for your medical treatment if you cannot make those decisions yourself. A Living Will is often used along with a Medical Power of Attorney or Health Care Proxy to designate someone to make health care decisions on your behalf.
- Power of Attorney (Financial Power of Attorney): This document designates a person who will make financial decisions and other legal acts on your behalf if you are unable to do so while you are still alive. Your agent may access bank accounts, manage real estate or other assets, file income tax returns or apply for benefits on your behalf.
Talk to Visionary Financial Group about an estate plan that will minimize taxes, maximize wealth retention, and give you the satisfaction of knowing that your financial affairs are in order for your beneficiaries. Call Shelly Dodge at 972/539-0002 today to schedule a complimentary consultation and additional information about estate planning.